Stephen walks in and greets Mr Jide respectfully. He had made up his mind two days ago to visit Mr Jide and tell him about his daughter’s behavior, he does not expect to see Charity and Chucks in the house.
Chucks overcome with anger on seeing Stephen gets up and grabs him on his collar.
Chucks: “What are you doing here again? Haven’t I warned you to stay away from my girl? Why are you still following us about?”
Stephen pushes Chuck’s hands from him. “Will you get your hands off me? Are you mad or something?”
Charity: “What are you doing here, Stephen? Do you now follow me even when I am in my father’s house?”
Mr Jide is taken aback by Chuck’s violence. “Where did you pick up this tout from? Young man, so you have no atom of respect for me that you want to fight my guest?”
Chucks: “I am sorry, sir. It’s just that this guy needs to be taught some lessons”.
Mr Jide: “If there is anybody who needs to be taught any lesson here, then it is you because you obviously lack home training”, he fires back at Chucks.
Stephen: “I am so sorry to disturb your peace, sir. I didn’t know that you are in the middle of a meeting. I think I will go and come back another day”, he turns around to leave but Mr Jide stops him.
Mr Jide: “No, don’t leave, my son. You came at the right time. What is this thing that I hear that you did to my daughter?”
Stephen: “How do you mean, sir? I didn’t do anything to her”, surprise clearly written on his face.
Mr Jide: “Well, I heard that you are not together with my daughter anymore”.
Stephen: “Actually, that is why I came to visit you sir. I don’t know what has come over Charity. She says she is no longer interested in the relationship. I came here with the intention of asking you to plead with her on my behalf”. He turns to Charity and attempts to take her hands but she moves away.
Stephen: “Charity, we have come a long way. I am willing to put everything you said and did to hurt me behind. Let’s make this work, you mean the world to me. I love you so much. Please, baby. Remember all that we have been through together”.
Charity: “Stephen, I am no longer interested in whatever it is that you have to offer. Leave me alone, what is it now? Is it by force to marry you? How many times will I tell you that I have moved on and that I have another person that I want to marry? Are you that daft that you cannot understand simple sentences anymore?”
MrJide: “Charity! Are you out of your mind? God, what has university life done to you? You want to throw Stephen away after all that he has done for you? Oh, you feel you have arrived as a graduate right? Would you have ever made it to the university without his help?”
Charity: “Of course I would have made it to the university without him. Was he the one who helped me to write my JAMB exams? Was he the one who wrote the post UTME examinations for me? Why won’t I make it to the university without him? Is he God? Did I ask him to come into my life as at the time he did?”
Mr Jide: “I can now see that you have really gone crazy. You want to throw away this priceless jewel because of this stranger that cannot even control his temper? Do you want him to turn you into his punching bag after marriage? You have the guts to open your mouth and insult a man that used his hard earned money to pay for your education”.
Charity: “So because he paid my fees means I should be stuck with him for life? Is marriage what you do out of sympathy for someone?”
Stephen moves close to Charity and gets on his knees. “Baby, please don’t do this to me. Baby look at me, it is me Stephen, I cannot live without you. I have waited for years to make you my wife, the pain of seeing you as another man’s wife will kill me. Already I have started losing concentration in court and I have lost so many cases already as a result of this. Have mercy on me, baby. If I have offended you in any way, please forgive me”.
Charity: “Oh, Stephen, why do like embarrassing yourself? I said I am no longer interested”.
Mr Jide: “Do you have a choice? You think you can break his heart after all that he has done for you and me? Well, I am not an ingrate like you, if not for Stephen, I would have died long ago when I needed money for my operation. It is over my dead body that I will give out your hands to another man in marriage”.
Charity: “Daddy, how can you even say a thing like that? Gone are the centuries when parents force their daughters to marry husbands against their wish. I am no longer interested in Stephen. Chucks here told Stephen to tell him whatever he has spent on me so that he can pay him back. What else does he want from me? Why should I be stuck with this charge and bail lawyer for life when I can marry another person?”
Stephen surprised at the level of Charity’s disdain for him and his profession, gets up and cleans his trousers.
Stephen: “You now refer me as a charge and bail lawyer? The same profession that I used to pay your fees is now what you ridicule this much? What crime did I commit by sticking by you when you had no one to help? Tell me Charity, what wrong did I do by loving you unconditionally all these years?”
Charity: “Who do you expect to answer all those questions? Do you think you are in the court?”
Stephen: “Okay, then. I will leave you Charity. Whatever I have spent on you, I forgive. I leave you with your conscience. May you experience peace and joy in all your future endeavors and may God give me the grace to overcome this heartbreak”. Turning to Mr Jide he says: “I am sorry, sir but I can’t force her to love me. It is one thing to force a horse to the river and another thing to force it to drink water. Please, feel free to call on me whenever you need help, you are like a father to me and you will always remain so”.
Stephen turns around and walks out of the room before Mr Jide could say anything.
Four months after the incident with Stephen, Charity and Chucks get married. Mr Jide who had resisted giving his fatherly blessings had no option than to do so when Charity reported him to his brothers with the threat of committing suicide if he does not allow her to marry Chucks. Their wedding which was held in their Church Cathedral was the talk of town as Chucks spared no pains in making sure that his wedding outweighs all the weddings before theirs. The reception which had in attendance family and friends from all walks of life was glamorous as guests had more than enough to eat and drink and take home.
After the reception, Charity and Chucks leave for their home in their wedding car. As soon as they get to the room, Chucks receives a call and excuses himself to attend to an emergency and goes out leaving Charity all alone in the house. Tired and exhausted from the wedding stress, she dozes off and when she wakes up, she realizes that she had slept for more than one hour. She remembers that Chucks is yet to return. “Where could my husband be like this? Tonight is our wedding night and instead of him to be with me here, he is nowhere to be found. I hope nothing has happened to him. God, please keep my husband safe for me”, she says. She picks up her phone and dials his number, it rings several times but he does not pick. She waited for about 30 minutes and when he doesn’t call back, he sends him an SMS and waits for his reply. “This is so unlike him, God what should I do?” she soliloquizes as she paces up and down the room in her wedding dress.
Stephen has been drinking himself to stupor after Charity broke his heart. The terrible pain of betrayal and heartbreak has caused him to lose so much flesh and his appearance is like that of a mad man as he refused to shave for the past weeks. He had learnt of the date of her wedding from Segun and he had silently prayed in his heart that the world should end before the day breaks as he cannot bear the thoughts of charity being referred to as another man’s wife. On the door of the wedding, he locks himself in his room and refuses to come out. After having about 8 bottles of alcohol, he pours into his glass the remaining content of the last bottle, pours in poison that he bought and gulps down all the content. Few minutes later, his stomach begins to hurt as a result of the effect of the poison that he had. In pain, he falls down on the floor and begins to scream for help.
Question: Where could Chucks be? What will Charity do? Will Stephen die of the poison he took?
…SEE Episode 16 Below (You don’t wanna miss this!)
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